Best Of 2019 – Our Top 5 Chronograph Watches

By rolex
April 16, 2021
6 min read

The year’s end is quick drawing closer, so it’s time for us to glance back at the best watches 2019 brought to the watch community. Furthermore, there were a ton of interesting curiosities. Thus, we reunited the MONOCHROME group, discussed and we today we start our “Best of 2019” arrangement, taking a gander at the five best chronographs of the year – as we would see it, that is… implying that you’re permitted to disagree and to share your #1 2019 chronograph watches with us in the comment section.

Blancpain Air Command Chronograph Re-Edition

Why this one? SImple… Look at it. This watch is just the coolest Blancpain in recent years. While the vast majority of the watches created by the brand are exquisite, exemplary bits of vintage-inspired jumpers, this new watch feels different. Blancpain probably won’t be the most popular brand for pilot’s watches (sister-brand Breguet has more pedigree, clearly) yet, the brand, back in the last part of the 1950s delivered a tricky watch planned to be worn by the United States Air Force… for whom Blancpain is thought to have created twelve watches as prototypes.

This year, the brand completes two things. To begin with, it affirms the presence of these vintage watches (quite possibly the most sought-after military chronographs of the last part of the 1950s). Second, it offers a genuinely brilliant re-edition of this watch , with a ultra-vintage look and current materials and development. No hand-twisted Valjoux inside, yet the high-frequency, incorporated chronograph type F388B with flyback work. Restricted to 500 pieces, this is one for the collectors.

Quick facts: 42.50mm width x 13.77mm tallness – treated steel case – type F388B, in-house – automatic segment wheel flyback chronograph – reference AC01-1130-63A – restricted to 500 pieces – CHF 18,500

Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT Automatic

Why this one? Because you’re taking a gander at perhaps the most inventive chronographs of the most recent decade, and the thinnest chronograph development and watch at any point created. Already having the record for the thinnest moment repeater, the thinnest hand-wound tourbillon, the thinnest automatic HMS watch and the thinnest automatic watch (all complications included), Bvlgari currently sets its fifth world record with the Bvlgari Octo Finissimo Chronograph , with an impressive movement.

Inside the signature, strong titanium Octo case is a section wheel chronograph development of just 3.3mm… And if that wasn’t enough, it is automatic (with a fringe rotor) and features a GMT sign. The case is marginally bigger than other Octo Finissimo watches however remains super smooth at 6.90mm. No discussion, Bvlgari has become the expert of the super slender watch.

Quick facts: 42mm distance across x 6.90mm tallness – sandblasted titanium case – Caliber BVL 318, in-house – automatic with a fringe rotor – reference 103068 – CHF 16,500

Carl F. Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual

Why this one? It might have been just about the look. In fact, Carl F. Bucherer’s most recent creation looks great. A panda chronograph, with a pleasantly molded case, a perfectly planned dial, a relatively restrained width (not generally the situation for the brand…). Outwardly, there’s already a great deal to cherish here.

But the best comes from the capacities. Rather than simply dispatching a chronograph with date, Carl F. Bucherer chose to add some horological content here, with a major date set where it ought to be on the dial… And additionally a month sign, on the grounds that really, this watch is a yearly schedule, most likely the best schedule complication accessible, requiring only one correction a year, without the expense and the delicacy of an interminable schedule. So with everything taken into account, this Heritage BiCompax Annual has the looks and the mechanics.

Quick facts: 41mm measurement x 14.05mm tallness – tempered steel case – CFB 1972 automatic (changed base ETA 2894) chronograph development – yearly schedule module – reference 00.10803.08.12.01 – restricted edition of 888 pieces – CHF 6,900

IWC Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph TOP GUN Ceratanium

Why this one? At MONOCHROME we feel weak at the knees over the Pilot’s DoppelChronograph by IWC… The combination returns to the mid 1990s when the brand re-presented the Flieger assortment with the ref. 3711. Be that as it may, it additionally refers to a notable development, the Valjoux-based rattrapante chronograph created by Richard Habring, a strong, improved and made-for-activity form of this generally sensitive complication.

This year, IWC carries back the dark DoppelChronograph with a shiny new material – Ceratanium – that combines the softness and power of titanium with the non-scratching and non-blurring properties of clay. The entire watch is treated in dark, with an appropriate instrument look. Indeed, it is enormous and not really open, but rather still, we love it.

Quick facts: 44mm distance across x 16.7mm tallness – matte-dark Ceratanium case, pushers and crown – Caliber IWC 79420, in view of Valjoux architecture – automatic split-seconds chronograph – reference IW371815 – EUR 14,700

Vacheron Constantin Historiques Cornes de Vache 1955 Steel

Why this one? While the two previous editions of the Cornes de Vache, in platinum and in rose gold, were already on our rundown of top choices, this year Vacheron Constantin presents what could well be the best watch in its “Historiques” collection… a steel Cornes de Vaches chronograph .

This watch is the ideal meaning of a top of the line, hand-wound chronograph. It has retrained measurements, style, a touch of inventiveness with its tear-drop formed carries (yet not all that much either), an amazingly planned dial and a development that is a blowout for the eyes. The new steel model brings a smidgen more easygoing quality, with its two-tone dial and a vintage calfskin lash, just as a somewhat less unreasonable price.

Quick facts: 38.5mm width x 10.9mm thick – treated steel case – Caliber 1142, in light of Lemania 2310, manufactured in-house – hand-wound section wheel chronograph – reference 5000H/000A-B582 – EUR 41,600


The boss’ veto… Breitling Navitimer 1959

Why this one? This one didn’t accomplish unanimity among the team… But Frank, our author, loves it and we thought it merited an exceptional notice in this “best of 2019”. In any case, we said in our review that the Navitimer Ref. 806 1959 Re‑Edition is seemingly perhaps the coolest reissue we’ve seen from any brand in years. What’s more, indeed, we remain behind this statement.

So why wasn’t it recorded in the Top 5..? Above all else, one could contend that it is by one way or another a straightforward duplicate glue of an old model and that it has no creativity. Not entirely off-base, yet the result remains cool. Second, the fundamental issue is that it is presently sold-out… Sadly!

Quick facts: 40.9mm distance across x 13.43mm stature – treated steel case – Breitling Manufacture Caliber B09 – hand-wound segment wheel chronograph – reference AB0910371B1X1 – restricted edition of 1,959 pieces – EUR 7,700